The Reverend Professor Emmanuel Martey, outgoing Moderator of the Presbyterian Church of Ghana (PCG), has accused politicians of attempting to gag him with bribes.
He claims that he was offered a bribe of 100,000 dollars, a 4×4 vehicle and a house at Trassco Estates, to refrain from expressing his views on matters affecting the nation.
Since he rejected the offer, he says he has been receiving threatening text messages, and calls.
Addressing a press conference in Accra yesterday, the outspoken man of God said he would have unleashed big dogs on the alleged bribe givers, if he had any, to serve as a deterrent.
When The Ghanaian Times approached him later to substantiate the allegations, Rev. Prof. Martey declined to disclose the names of those who attempted to bribe him, neither would he state when the offer was made.
He said the Bible enjoined him to speak on societal ills and he would not keep mute while “thieves and babies with sharp teeth” attempted to run him down for speaking the truth.
“The truth hurts, but we must speak the truth and the truth shall set you free,” he stated.
The Rev. Prof. Martey said he would continue to criticise the government and demand accountability from its leadership, because he is a Ghanaian and tax payer, adding that he would have done same to the New Patriotic Party(NPP) if he had “been in existence as the Moderator at the time the NPP was in office”.
He said the Presbyterian Church of Ghana had worked with different governments, and was currently working with the governing NDC in education and health, but that would not stop him from commenting on “the rot in the system”.
He said Ghana was moving in “a reverse gear” because of the powerlessness of civil society, stressing that change would not happen if civil society was not actively involved in the governance process.
Commenting on allegations that he is a member of the NPP, the Presbyterian Moderator said the very opposite is true.
“Reverend Martey is more complex than you can imagine. How can a full Professor sell his conscience to one political party?” he asked.
He said the church served as the vanguard of spiritual and physical transformation of the nation, based on mutual respect and tolerance, and its position on the myriad issues should not be misconstrued by politicians.
“The transformation we seek for this nation must be one devoid of hatred and strife. It must promote mutual respect and tolerance towards making service to the nation a noble cause, rather than a means to acquire illegal wealth,” he said.
The Moderator, appealed to other faith-based organisations to help offer strong and purposeful leadership to rid the country of corruption, apathy and mediocrity.
He applauded the Electoral Commission (EC), the government and the political parties for their efforts at advancing the cause of democracy but cautioned the EC to tread cautiously on all matters relating to the December 7 elections.
“We must note that since elections are fundamental building blocks of democracy, free and fair elections are central to the legitimacy of democratic governance. We, therefore, wish to advice the EC to perform to the satisfaction of all stakeholders,” he said.
On partisan politics and the role of the media in the upcoming elections, the Reverend Prof. Martey cautioned against the use of intemperate language and emphasised the need for the media to be decorous and circumspect.
Touching on occultism in schools, the PCG Moderator called on the Ghana Education Service and Christian organisations to draw a “serious code of ethics and practices that would serve as a way of curbing religious excesses and ensuring commitment to positive practices”.
On examination malpractices, he said although there was no reported incidence of examination malpractice at the Basic Education Certificate Examination, reports of the cancellation of the West Africa Senior Schools’ Certificate Examination gave cause for concern.
To forestall such practices, Prof. Martey suggested the involvement of the parent-teacher in policy formulation, enhanced teacher motivation, severe punishment for culprits and cancellation of the ‘league table for schools’.
By Malik Sullemana